Disturbing video of NJ political official allegedly punching blind army veteran

Josh Einiger Image
Thursday, July 9, 2015
Elderly blind war veteran allegedly punched by political official in NJ
Josh Einiger has the shocking video and talks to the victim.

EAST ORANGE, N.J. (WABC) -- Disturbing video was released allegedly showing a high ranking political official in New Jersey punching a blind man who's a war veteran.

It apparently happened after an argument.

The official is charged with a misdemeanor, but now with this video the victim is pushing for tougher charges.

"I hear this rumbling, 'Where the blank is Bill Graves? I'm gonna kick his butt!'" said Bill Graves, punching victim.

At 75, Army veteran Bill Graves isn't one to back down when challenged, but when he was called out as he volunteered as a poll watcher during East Orange's council primary last month, he did not expect to be sucker punched in both eyes by a man young enough to be his son.

"You can see on the tape it was intentional. If I went to hit you and just hurt you, I would hit you here. If I'm trying to knock you out I'm going to hit you here. If I hit you up here, I'm hitting you in a vulnerable spot," Graves said.

It was especially vulnerable because Graves is blind, completely in one eye, legally in the other, thanks to cataracts and glaucoma.

"It's not good, that's all I can say. I'm smiling, but I' not laughing," Graves said.

Especially because he knows his alleged attacker. He has been identified by Essex County Prosecutors as Leroy Jones, the chairman of the county democratic committee.

Graves and his friends say the attack was sparked by petty political bickering; that Graves had been backing a candidate Jones was not.

Now Graves says his vision is even worse.

"Angry, disgusted, because why should I have to run back and forth to the doctor because someone decided to hit me," Graves said.